[email protected] offers pickup location for online holiday shoppers

Sunny Kim

For the first time, students can order and pickup their Black Friday and Cyber Monday purchases at the Amazon pickup location at Gregory Gymnasium. 

Many students previously had inconvenient experiences picking up their packages before the Amazon pickup location was installed in the summer, according to Jennifer Speer, director of communications, assessment, development and IT for the Division of Recreational Sports. 

“Many of the students we talked to before this partnership explained that their packages were either left on their doors that anybody could take away, or they had to wait until their apartment office was open in very inconvenient times,” Speer said.

Psychology sophomore Michelle Tran, who lives in Chelsea Condominium at 25th, said she wouldn’t want to order packages directly to her apartment because there is no safe mailbox system. 

“It’s a really nice place, it’s just the package issue,” Tran said. “It comes on time, but the package just sits outside when I’m not home.”

Speer said she believes the partnership between UT and Amazon brings a positive experience to students.

“The idea of having the opportunity to take advantage of getting pickups on campus in a safe, convenient location like Gregory Gym that is open long hours has led to a very positive student experience,” Speer said.

Nursing freshman Stephanie Chen said she ordered new headphones during Black Friday because she lost her original pair. The Amazon pickup location is close and convenient for her, Chen said.

“I live at Moore Hill, so it’s super close,” Chen said. “Anything I need, I just pickup here because it’s so convenient.”

Amazon student members also receive a free one-day pickup for orders placed by 10 p.m., according to Amazon’s website. Chen said the one-day free shipping is a great deal because it saves her time. 

“If you need something within a day, you can get it the next day,” Chen said. 

Last year on Cyber Monday, Amazon customers ordered 54 million items worldwide, which is equivalent to 629 items per second, said Jeffrey Barker, global communications writer at Amazon, in an email. 

“We expect this year to be even bigger,” Barker said.

Neuroscience freshman Eloise Taha said it was her first time using the service. Taha said she ordered Christmas gifts for her family members to the Amazon pickup place. 

“It was helpful, because I ordered the gifts on Sunday, and it’s already here,” Taha said. “I just got out of class, and I’m going to my dorm after this, so it wasn’t out of the way or anything.”

[email protected] is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and on the weekend from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m.